One of the most anticipated moments of the release of Batman v. Superman: Dawn of Justice is the big-screen debut of Wonder Woman. The princess of the immortal Amazons has been a major player in the DC Comics universe since 1941, so her blockbuster appearance has been a long time coming. Whether you’re completely unfamiliar with the comic origins of Princess Diana of Themyscira, or looking to further immerse yourself into her universe, here are ten Wonder Woman stories that everyone needs to read:
1. Gods and Mortals, by George Pérez, Greg Potter and Len Wein
Following the massive crossover Crisis on Infinite Earths, writer/artist George Pérez took the reins of the Wonder Woman reboot, and his Gods and Mortals (and its follow up Challenge of the Gods) has become an integral place to begin the journey into the world of Wonder Woman. Diana’s origins in this book defined what we know about the character.
2. Eyes of the Gorgon, by Greg Rucka and William Moulton Marston
Diana’s origins are strongly rooted in Greek mythology, but not all of her stories place her within that mythos. Eyes of the Gorgon embraces that world masterfully, pitting her against Medusa and incorporating her in one of Greece’s most famous legends, all while never losing sight of the fact that she is a modern heroine.
3. The Hiketeia by Greg Rucka and J.G. Jones
In The Hiketeia, Wonder Woman partakes in an ancient ritual that binds her to eternally protect a woman named Danielle Wellys. When Wellys murders a group of drug dealers, Batman is hot on her trail. The Hiketeia pits Wonder Woman against the Dark Knight in a morality play with no right answers. In a modern take on the Greek tragedy, our heroine is forced to choose between breaking a sacred oath and turning her back on justice.
4. Spirit of Truth by Paul Dini and Alex Ross
Spirit of Truth manages to convey what makes Wonder Woman so special in only 64 pages. Starting with her birth, from the viewpoint of her mother, Spirit of Truth follows Wonder Woman through her struggles as an ambassador, a superhero and a woman who has become a feminist icon.
5. The Circle by Gail Simone
Many consider Simone’s run on Wonder Woman to be the “Golden Age” of the character, not seen since Greg Rucka’s run years before. The Circle pits Wonder Woman against a variety of challenges (like Nazis and evil gorillas), but its greatest achievement is in presenting Diana as a real person.
6. A League of One by Christopher Moeller
Wonder Woman’s legacy as a leader has forced her to make tough decisions over the years, but no story encapsulates that conflict better than A League of One. After a prophecy foretells the death of the entire Justice League, Diana takes it upon herself to incapacitate Superman, Batman and the rest of the League to face the menace alone.
7. Paradise Lost by Phil Jimenez and George Pérez
In Paradise Lost, Diana’s mythological past meets her superhero present, pitting her against a team of masked criminals and violent Greek gods. Afterwards, she must mend a civil war back home because she neglected her role as leader in favor of her Wonder Woman persona.
8. Paradise Found by Phil Jimenez
The follow-up to Jiminez’s Paradise Lost, Paradise Found finds Wonder Woman rebuilding Paradise Island in the aftermath of civil war. Taking advantage of Earth’s vulnerability, the sorceress Circe transforms the fatigued male superheroes into vicious animals, leaving Wonder Woman and a group of heroines to reverse the damage. The battle between the cursed, bestial Superman and Wonder Woman stands out as a highlight.
9. The Twelve Labors by Len Wein and Curt Swan
Taking place before the Crisis on Infinite Earth’s reboot, The Twelve Labors follows Wonder Woman as she proves her worthiness to the Justice League after recently regaining her powers. The resulting story solidifies her place among the rest of the Justice League, and it’s this iteration of Wonder Woman that has become the basis for all those that followed.
10. New 52 Wonder Woman by Brian Azzarello and Cliff Chiang
New 52 Wonder Woman has been heralded as one of the best reboots in the DC library, and Azzarello’s storylines are particularly welcoming to newcomers. New 52 Wonder Woman takes massive liberties with the character, redefining her origins and powers, and placing her more firmly in ancient Greek mythology.
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